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Posted: Jul 04, 2009

Thanks Anders for letting me know where to find the delete log. I never would have found this on my own. Helped a lot to recover from my accidental delete.

Posted: Jul 03, 2009

I'd like to provide some feedback on how subtasks are displayed on the iPhone app. I invite others to comment, correct, or provide alternative points of view to help produce the best solution.

Currently (iPhone 3.0 ver of app) I feel subtask management has a lot of room for improvement. Some specifics in order of importance to me:
1) When I display Starred or Hotist, subtasks that should be included in these lists are not if the subtasks filter is on. I'm sure this makes sense based on what the filter is designed to do, but in a real world application it's too easy to forget that the filter is on. Since seeing the entire hotlist or starred list is crucial to me to avoid accidentally missing something, I'm forced to avoid using the subtask filter altogether. I would expect any task or subtask that is starred or "hot" to be displayed. Perhaps the problem is the design of the global subtask filter.
2) Display subtasks nested/sorted beneath their parent task, inline with a larger task list. Currently one must drill down on a parent task to view a subtask list. This is sometimes useful, but when surveying all possible work it's nice to have everything in a single list, and in context with related work. IMO the current subtask sort method is kinda useless and has no real world application I can think of.
3) Indent subtasks a little to represent them more clearly as subtasks. The little icons on the right are not as visible as an indent. If that's not possible perhaps a smaller font size would make subtasks more distinctive.
4) Allow subtasks to be expanded/collapsed from the main list. The global subtask filter is not as easy and less practical as a result. A global show/hide button would be easy enough, but opening a menu is just difficult/slow enough to discourage it's use for me.

Thanks for listening.


These requests are not exotic: they are mostly just copying the behavior of the excellent web version. But since getting my iPhone I use the mobile app probably 80% of the time now.

Posted: Jul 02, 2009

Today I accidentally deleted 9 tasks. They were subtasks nested under a task which I intended to delete. For this particular job I decided later to make it a goal rather than a task, and then have its subtasks be regular tasks linked to the goal. Unfortunately I guess I assumed that when I deleted the major task the subtasks would be promoted to regular tasks. Turns out they were deleted instead.

I suppose you could justify either type of behavior, but now I have to remember and recreate the tasks and thought it would be nice to have a trash folder that stores deleted items for a day or so, just like various online email systems do. There might be other solutions to this problem as well.

BTW I performed this delete from the iPhone app. I did not receive a confirmation dialog indicating that all subtasks would be lost.

Posted: Jul 30, 2008
From Topic: Importance Level

Let me give an example where the algorithm for Importance breaks down. Many of my due dates are more like target dates, with some flexibility built in. I like to mow the lawn once a week, but if for some reason I'm out of town or can't do it for some reason, it's okay if it waits a few more days. Paying taxes, on the other hand, absolutely must happen by April 15. Yet, if I was behind on my lawn mowing around tax time, there would be many scenarios where "Mow Lawn" would appear higher in Importance than "Pay Taxes".

Little silly isn't it?

Posted: Jul 30, 2008
From Topic: Importance Level

I haven't found many flaws in this product, but this is one of them. The Importance level is arbitrarily defined, no matter how much "logic" the developers insist is behind the algorithm. No matter how much deep thought and rationale lies behind the algorithm, it won't fit everyone's idea of what is "most important" because we all use priorities, stars, and due dates a little bit differently. Bottom line: importance is subjective. It can never be distilled down to a single equation. I wish life were that easy.

Since this is easy to ignore, it doesn't affect how I use the product or my positive experiences with it. I put this feature in the category of "nice try".

This message was edited Jul 30, 2008.

Posted: Jul 24, 2008
From Topic: Show Subtasks Request

I second this request. I find that I am constantly collasping subtasks so I can reduce my list as much as possible before deciding what to do. I have 100s of items so it's important to be able to reduce the list as much as possible. I only need to see subtasks if I decide to work on a particular project on that day, or if I'm curious what the next step is. Otherwise I prefer to keep them rolled up so my list is shorter and easier to review and make decisions.

Once I decide to work on a project, I may star the next subtask so it shows up in my star list. In that instance I prefer to see the subtask by itself without the project and associated subtasks. It works like this today, but I just thought I'd point that out since it is sometimes useful to see the subtasks by themselves, showing up in the correct context or priority list they may apply to independent of the other subtasks.

For this reason, I'm not sure a "Show Notes" type solution would work exactly right, since I presume this would bring all the subtasks together under the project or main task, like it does today. I wonder if a simple filter to hide subtasks might work better, while still retaining the current behavior where you can instantly see all subtasks grouped together with a single click (great design btw).

Posted: Jul 22, 2008
From Topic: Starred Tasks

Great feature. I use it to mark which items I plan to work on today. I noticed with recurring items I was always doing a "double click" to first turn off the star and then check off the task. Otherwise the next instance of the recurring task is starred, which is not what I want. I noticed a couple others in this thread had the same problem. It's not a major problem, and I realize other people may use stars differently, but for me it would be nice if the star automagically turned off when I completed it.

Posted: Jul 22, 2008

I use folders for different areas of focus: Career, Home Life, Social, Life Experience, Interests, Health. Areas of focus do not have a beginning or an end, but represent different areas of my life that I may choose to focus on or that I have some kind of responsibility. This is similar to the GTD "20,000 foot view" which is one level above projects (at 10,000 feet). So folders contain tasks and projects that contribute to that area of focus or responsibility.

Posted: Jul 22, 2008
From Topic: iPhone App

For me, a serious GTDer who loves Toodledo, this iPhone app is practically worthless. I was convinced to buy it by all the positive reviews, but it took me about 2 minutes to realize this wasn't going to help me much.

To explain the limitations of this app, imagine with Toodledo you were only able to access the "View by Folders" lists. This is essentially all you have with Todo. Not too useful for me, as I routinely use the Context lists (and now the Status lists) when deciding what to do. My folders have upwards of 50-90 items each, so view by folder is kind of useless to me.

I too hope the Toodledo developers will consider producing their own app. If they decide not to, at least keep the Slim browser updated and functional, since that's what I'll have to use.